Healthy Club

Aims of the Healthy Club Project 

The Healthy Club project aims to help GAA clubs explore how they support the holistic health of their members and the communities they serve. GAA clubs already contribute to the health and wellbeing of their members by providing opportunities to develop their physical, social, emotional, and psychological health.

The project aims to help GAA clubs identify what they are already doing well, identify areas where they can or would like to improve, and empower them to ensure that everyone who engages with their club benefits from the experience in a health-enhancing way, be they players, officers, coaches, parents, supporters, or members of their local community.

The healthy club model, which is based on best national and international practice, also aims to embed a healthy philosophy in a club while integrating health into the day-to-day club activities in a sustainable way. It also aims to place the local GAA club at the heart of the community, making it a beacon for health in the locale.

Please see http://www.gaa.ie/my-gaa/community-and-health/ for further information.

Physical Activity

Let’s move more and sit less. If you take one thing from this section, let it be that simple message.

It is recommended by the World Health Organisation that children and young people (aged 2-18) should be active moderate to vigorous level, for at least 60 minutes every day. This should include muscle-strengthening, flexibility and bone-strengthening exercises 3 times a week.

Adults (aged 18 – 64) should be active for at least 30 minutes a day of moderate activity on 5 days a week (or 150 minutes a week).

Older people (aged 65+) should be active for at least 30 minutes a day of moderate intensity activity on 5 days a week, or 150 minutes a week with a focus on aerobic activity, muscle strengthening and balance.

People with disabilities should be as active as their ability allows and should aim to meet adult guidelines of at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity on

Gambling, Alcohol & Drug Education

ASAP programme

The Alcohol & Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) Programme was the GAA’s first foray into more formal health promotion. A joint venture with the Health Service Executive (HSE) the ASAP programme was introduced in 2006 at a time when Ireland’s alcohol consumption was at an all-time high (peaking at over 14 litres of pure alcohol per person ages 15+). 

The ASAP programme today includes tobacco education reflecting the desire by many GAA clubs to become completely smoke-free campuses (inspired by the examples of pioneering clubs in the GAA Healthy Club Project).

While each GAA club was once recommended to have a dedicated ASAP officer, the programme has now been included into the broader agenda delivered through the new health and wellbeing structure of at national, provincial, county, and club level.

The ASAP Programme aims to tackle the issue of alcohol and substance abuse through three key approaches:

– Prevent alcohol and other drug related problems from happening

– Educate members about relevant issues

– Respond appropriately should a problem arise

Extensive resources such as the Club ASAP policy and guidelines, manual, flyers, and SAOR (Brief Intervention) training booklets have been developed and are available to access and review by clicking on the relevant tabs above.

Problem gambling

Problem gambling is becoming a growing concern in modern Ireland. To respond to this growing concern, the Association has produced a booklet of basic guidelines as an educational resource for our players, members, and clubs.

This document aims to assist GAA members in identifying what problem gambling is and to encourage those who may be experiencing a difficulty to seek support and assistance. It also highlights the strict regulations and consequences – both within GAA rule and the broader laws of the land – regarding match-fixing or the use of insider information for the financial gain of the individual or team concerned, or any third parties involved.

The Community & Health department, with the support of the National Health & Wellbeing Committee is also currently developing a gambling awareness workshop that will be tested at Congress 2017. It is hoped that a powerpoint presentation highlighting key risk and actions a club or squad can take will be available to interested persons before the end of September 2017 The GAA would not exist without the communities we represent and serve.

Every club in the Association already supports the development of its communities in a broad variety of ways, whether that’s offering young people the chance to better themselves through sport or by supporting local charities through fundraising events and functions. The programmes outlined here aim to highlight how clubs can maximise their positive influence, be that by becoming more age-friendly and engaging older members of our communities or by supporting national campaigns such as those supporting road or farm safety.  

The GAA can also play an important role in supporting its members and communities in the aftermath of what are called critical incidents. Each year the Community & Health team in Croke Park receives between 30-40 requests from clubs and counties for support in the aftermath of such a situation (a critical incident is defined as a situation that overwhelms one’s natural capacity to respond). These are as broad and varied in their nature as any situation that can befall any individual, club, or community.

Training & Personal Development

The Community & Health department is continually striving to ensure that it supports the growth and personal development of all GAA members and especially those interested in the sphere of health and wellbeing. To this end, a variety of interesting and innovative training and educational programmes have been devised for members. 

Please see http://www.gaa.ie/my-gaa/community-and-health/training-personal-development/ for details of training and educational programmes available.

Club Lotto

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